Original Email Subject Line:
Do what Don Draper doesn’t
17th August 2021

Yesterday I talked about the fall of the Berlin wall.

Today I’m going even further back in time.

(And in a month I’ll probably be comparing dinosaurs to email. Stay tuned.)


10 years ago Mad Men mesmerized me.

In fact, that show made me apply to business school.

I learned a lot watching Don and the others create sizzling ads in the 60s.

I’ve since unlearned all of those things.

“Haah yeah Mad Men is a great sho– what?”

You read that right, Bobby.
(that’s what I call you, remember?
Cuz I forgot to ask for your name during the signup…
It was a whole thing…)



Mad Men is a great show.

With even greater lines.

“I don’t think about you at all.” Ouch!


But man is it JAM-PACKED with horrible advertising advice.



Season 1, Episode 1.

Lucky Strike is facing backlash because of the rumored unhealthiness of tobacco.

Don’s office.

“According to my research at… whatever university in Switzerland [can’t remember, let’s move on], men like to know what living on the edge is like,” she asserted.

Don raised his eyebrow while locking his gaze with the Swiss.

“So that’s what your research shows? That men have a death wish!?”

Sal “Salvatore” Romano, the totally straight graphical artist that is certainly in no way gay, had been staring at the door for what felt like an eternity.

Then something else happened and I lost interest and decided to make an omelet instead.

So what’s wrong with the show, darling?

I’ll tell ya hwat’s wrong with it, Betsy.

– The underlying assumption that research is not based on people.

– The gut-feeling > data approach

– The openly hostile environment in a creative agency.
(Best way to kill creativity? Bad environment)

– The assumption that ads are written as opposed to assembled

– The focus on headlines, slogans instead of copy.
(Mad Men’s creative scenes are 99.99% focused on dumb taglines).

Now, I know. ????

Mad Men is fiction.

It’s not aimed at grumpy copywriters in Northern Europe who just had a delicious omelet.

It’s aimed at the general public that doesn’t care about marketing, ads, etc.


But if you’re anything like me…

“You once watched this show and thought there was an ounce of truth to it,” the tired email marketer scribbled.


Have a great Tuesday,

– Mats “Triceratops was truly the Dan Kennedy of the Mesozoic era” Liljeström

Email Copywriting For Course Creators


P.S. If you read yesterday’s email…

(go read it. It’s okay, I’ll keep the others busy)

… you’ll know that I was gonna reveal something big today.

But I noticed something iffy… something I need to check.

When that’s done and okayed, I’ll let you know.

Cuz I think this could be the thing copywriters need right now.

Or scratch that. I know.

I know it is.

Read tomorrow’s email. 

That’s all I have to say.

*End of email*

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